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6-12

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NOVA scienceNow

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A Nanotube Space Elevator

In this video adapted from NOVA scienceNOW, explore the potential of carbon nanotubes, whose strength and unique properties make them useful for a variety of applications. See animations of how carbon atoms bond to one another in different ways to make diamond, graphite, buckyballs, and nanotubes, and observe one method that is being researched to form and assemble carbon nanotubes into a long ribbon. Consider how a seemingly impossible application, such as an elevator from the surface of Earth to space, is now theoretically possible given this revolutionary new building material.

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